SCA Team Leader- Winter Prescribed Fire

Student Conservation Association

Various locations in southern U.S., Other

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $850/wk
Deadline Nov 30, 2023

Conservation Begins Here.

About us: The Student Conservation Association (SCA) is the largest provider of hands-on environmental conservation programs for youth and adults. Program participants protect and restore national parks, marine sanctuaries, cultural landmarks, and community green spaces across the country.

Program Dates:  Jan 8, 2024 – May 17, 2024

Leaders will kick off the season with training. Project leader training may not take place at the worksite, and likely will be with other leaders who will be working across the country.

Location: Various locations in southern U.S.

Primary Responsibilities:

The 2024 Prescribed Fire Teams will work closely with the US Forest Service (USFS). These crews will consist of one leader and four adult (18+) members. This active season will start with one week of dedicated SCA leader training, a week of leader season prep time, and two weeks of training alongside the team and USFS in chainsaw and wildland fire.

These teams will have shared housing based near their worksite. The primary objectives for this crew will be fuels reduction and prescribed burning work. The crew will prepare USFS lands for burning, conduct prescribed burning, and work on other conservation tasks as identified by the USFS. When conditions are not ideal for burning, these teams will assist site partners with other projects including vegetation removal, fire line preparation, equipment maintenance, and other work duties. In addition, members will receive job training, personal development, and natural resource management skills while working with these partners. Throughout the season, the crew may have opportunities to travel and respond to active fires.

Crew members will come from diverse backgrounds and may not have fire experience. We are looking for leaders with strong leadership and organizational skills, and a passion for this field. Additionally, we are looking for leaders that are emotionally mature, can motivate and inspire their crew members, and thrive in new and changing environments. Team leaders must have a current red card and 1-2 years of wildfire or prescribed burning experience.

Applicants will be accepted on a rolling basis, but those submitted before October 1, 2023, will be given priority. Interviews will take place on a rolling basis through early November, 2023.

Specifically, the Crew Leader will:

  • Lead a team of four members (18+), inspire and teach crew members, promote healthy group dynamics, and facilitate effective and productive teamwork;
  • Function as a technical advisor, assisting in training corps members to complete quality work with guidance and direction from the onsite supervisor;
  • Serve as a partnership representative managing relationships with the agency partner and ensuring successful and timely completion of work projects;
  • Perform tasks as a program administrator by communicating with SCA staff, completing documentation and managing a budget; and
  • Work variable hours (long days and/or weekend), at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain, in varying weather conditions, and under physically demanding circumstances.

Leader Qualifications:

  • Red card certification (possible option to renew certification at start of season);
  • 1 – 2 years of prescribed burning or wildland fire experience;
  • Chainsaw experience (Game of Logging or S212 certification);
  • 21+ years of age;
  • Ability to legally work in the US;
  • Ability to perform manual, physical labor for up to 10 hours per day, exposed to the elements and lifting and/or moving 40 pounds or more;
  • Ability to undergo an in-person physical at least 45 days prior to start date (1/8/24);
  • Ability to pass the Work Capacity Test at the arduous level;
  • Valid driver’s license and MVR that meets SCA standards required;
  • Ability to meet SCA’s criminal background check standards;
  • Must be able to attend mandatory Crew Leader Training (week of January 8, 2024);
  • Wilderness First Aid (WFA) or Wilderness First Responder (WFR) (preferred but not required);
  • Experience working with young adults, teaching or environmental education a plus

Strong candidates will have:

  • Experience managing crews of young adults in an outdoor setting and working with environmental agencies to plan and complete a project;
  • Experience with conservation work skills or related skills (e.g. trail maintenance, trail construction, habitat restoration, chainsaw, carpentry, landscaping, and gardening);
  • Ability to operate various types of equipment in a safe and efficient manner (e.g. ATV, two-way radio, etc.);
  • Knowledge of current trends and practices in conservation, land management and natural resource preservation;
  • Ability to complete tasks independently with respect to timeline(s);
  • Working knowledge of common software applications (e.g.; Word, Excel, Web browsers); and
  • Ability to keep complex logistics organized


  • $850/week salary (paid bi-weekly)
  • Shared housing and field-based meals
  • Travel stipend (up to $1000)

SCA is an EOE dedicated to workforce diversity.

For more information about SCA, visit us at www.theSCA.org 


Submit Application HERE

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Forestry, General / Stewardship
Tags Conservation Corps, Wildland Firefighter